The Grocer in the UK reports that potato processors have warned they will continue to face the impact of tight supplies until at least summer 2019, when the early potato crop gets underway.
AHDB confirmed yesterday the UK had recorded its smallest potato harvest for six years, with growers pulling 700,000 fewer tonnes of potatoes from the ground in this autumn’s harvest.
The total tonnage fell to 4.9 million tonnes, compared to the five-year average of 5.6 million tonnes, according to the levy board, leading many processors to relax specifications.
The shortage has already seen prices rising on a range of crisp and chip SKUs as manufacturers struggled to find the raw materials to meet demand, The Grocer reported last month.
Processors are limited by the physical characteristics of specific varieties required for crisp and French fry production,” said director general of the Potato Processors’ Association, Andrew Curtis.